UPDATE: First Lady kicks off national tour on Feb. 22
First Lady Michelle Obama launched the Let's Move! campaign on Feb. 9, 2010, at a White House ceremony jam-packed with lawmakers, Cabinet Secretaries and public health advocates. Saturday is the third anniversary. In a departure from the last two years, when Mrs. Obama marked the date with field trips outside of Washington, DC to celebrate at huge events with thousands of supporters, she is delaying this year's festivities until "later in the month," her Communications Director, Kristina Schake, told Obama Foodorama. UPDATE:
Schake did not give a reason for the delay, but said Mrs. Obama is "more committed than ever" to building on the progress that's been made in her national initiative to reduce the prevalence of childhood obesity.
"The First Lady is more committed than ever to keeping this momentum going and ensuring that all of our kids grow up healthy and reach their full potential."
On Saturday, Mrs. Obama will be in Chicago, attending the funeral for Hadiya Pendleton. But Mrs. Obama's official schedule is typically planned months in advance, and the teen was tragically gunned down just last week, so the trip is not causing the delay in Mrs. Obama's celebration.
The Let's Move! project has a twenty-year goal of reducing the prevalence of childhood obesity to just 5% by 2030, and Mrs. Obama's aides late on Friday posted an impressive list of 28 "milestones and collaborations" on the Let's Move! website.
"In the past three years of Let’s Move! we’ve seen real, concrete progress--including states and cities where the childhood obesity rate is decreasing," Schake said.
She declined to note what Mrs. Obama's upcoming celebration plans will include. The First Lady tweeted an anniversary message on Friday night at 9:05 PM.
"Happy 3rd anniversary @LetsMove! I’ve been so inspired by Americans coming together for our kids’ health. Stay tuned, more on the way! -mo," was posted on @FLOTUS.
One future event for Mrs. Obama is certain: In March, she will be the keynote speaker at Partnership for a Healthier America's Building a Healthier Future Summit in Washington, DC., the organization announced on Friday. The Partnership is the foundation created to coordinate private sector support for Let's Move!, and Mrs. Obama is honorary chair. She keynoted the conference in November of 2011 when it was held for the first time.
The 2012 celebration...
Last year on February 9th, Mrs. Obama embarked on a three-day, four-state tour to celebrate the second anniversary, one of her longest solo outings as First Lady, which included huge events in Iowa and Florida, battlegrounds that were crucial to President Obama's re-election effort. The trip kicked off in Des Moines, where Mrs. Obama rocked a stadium with 14,000 supporters and celebrity guests. Over the next eight months until Election Day, Mrs. Obama made repeat visits to Iowa for rallies, including the last-ever rally of her husband's career, also held in Des Moines on election eve.
The Let's Move! tour included a cooking challenge with Top Chef celebrities and kids in Texas, a visit to a military installation in Arkansas, a keynote speech by Mrs. Obama to thousands of supporters at a Florida megachurch, and a fitness event with teen celebrities and hundreds of kids at Disney World. Those were two of the four events that were in the Sunshine State, which President Obama also nabbed for his reelection.
The 2011 celebration...
In 2011, Mrs. Obama made a day trip to Atlanta, Georgia to mark the first anniversary of the campaign. She gave an impassioned speech at North Point Community Church in the suburb of Alpharetta, urging parents to flex their political muscles to pressure politicians and the corporate world to continue the success of Let's Move!. The First Lady also paid a visit to Burgess-Peterson Academy in Atlanta, where she met with youngsters and toured the school's garden.
The Building a Healthier Future Summit...
The 2013 Building a Healthier Future Summit will be at George Washington University on March 6-8, and "will bring together philanthropic, government, academia and private sector leaders to discuss real solutions to ending America’s childhood obesity crisis," the Partnership said in a statement announcing Mrs. Obama's appearance. Honorary vice chairs Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, N.J., and former Republican Senate majority leader Bill Frist will also be at the conference, as they were in 2011.
In December, the Partnership announced that Time, Inc. has signed on as "the exclusive media sponsor" for the conference, and will devote its print and digital properties to promoting the slate of scheduled events, as well as have an "on site" presence to promote its own health-related brands.
*CLICK HERE for links to all anniversary posts.
*CLICK HERE for links to all Let's Move! posts.
The First Lady's 2012 anniversary speech in Florida:
The First Lady's 2011 anniversary speech in Georgia:
*Photo by Eddie Gehman Kohan/Obama Foodorama, taken in July of 2012 when Mrs. Obama was announcing an expansion of the campaign with Let's Move! Cities, Towns and Counties.